In response to an anonymous comment made on my last post--don't you love people who attack behind an "anonymous" handle?--I want to clarify a few things about fat and thin.
The biggest cause of fatness is genetics. Heritability for obesity is .7, according to this article in the Proceedings of the Nutrition Society published by Cambridge University Press.
Upward of 90% of people who diet to lose weight gain the weight back and then some. So . . .
Diets don't work.
And . . . when diets don't work, they make people fatter.
Calories in do not equal calories out. (Contrary to anonymous' assertion, this concept does not defy the laws of physics; it's a function of metabolism, which is not uniform from person to person, and which is affected by a wide variety of factors. This not something that I "somehow think"; it's been observed over and over by scientists far more knowledgeable than I.)
Fat people tend to stay fat. (See Kolata.)
Thin people tend to stay thin. (See Kolata, Sims, Minnesota Starvation Study.)
Obesity appears to put people at risk for diabetes.
The relationship between fat/obesity and mortality is much more complicated than fat = bad, thin = good.
The current "moral panic" over fat hangs on a "health and wellness" peg but actually derives more from aesthetics than true health.
Even if we all agreed that fat was bad, we don't know how to make people thinner. See point #1.
Fat haters have a lot in common with racists. They may cloak their arguments in other terms, but the bottom line is that they see fat people as ugly second-class citizens who don't deserve to be happy, healthy, or whole.
Now, that's ugly.